Member profile: Richard – Cruiser

Hi, I’m Richard and I sail from NHYC in my Jaguar 25 “Mystique”.

Since I bought Mystique in 2009, Mystique has occupied one of the swinging moorings on “J” trot during the season, and spends the winter at Ridge.

In my earlier years I have sailed various dinghies at school and home, but it was only just prior to retirement that I renewed my interest in sailing. As a newcomer to “big boat” sailing, I found the friendly help and advice offered by other members, just what I needed to become more adventurous in my new sailing environment. I have many new friends as a result, and participate in the cruises and racing organised at NHYC.

During the season, races are arranged on Wednesdays – either morning or evenings depending on the tide – and weekends, when boats of various sizes competitively drift around inside and outside the harbour, trying to get past the boat ahead, and discouraging the ones behind getting past! All boats are handicapped so that each boat has a chance of winning, and so that the club President doesn’t always come first!

Cruises are arranged throughout the summer when we try to outwit the weather gods, enabling us to venture further east and west from Poole, allowing us to sample the local hospitality offered by our host port. The advantage of sailing in a “loose” convoy is perfect for gaining experience, in the knowledge that should assistance be required, there are always a number of other boats in close proximity to assist if it should be required, as I well recall!

As a participatory club, North Haven duties are a great way to meet others whilst helping in the running of the club. I regularly do water taxi and day watch duties, and in the early season you might see me tying knots in bits of string for the tender outhauls.